Supernatural Creatures

Supernatural Creatures

This page serves as a list of all the supernatural creatures currently on our website and is sure to continue to grow over time.

Alternative names for these creatures are also displayed alongside them.

See also

Interactive Map

This map aims to try and map those creatures whose home is stated in the documents we are researching. We hope you find it useful.

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A

Akashita in the Gazu Hyakki Yagyo.
  • Abura akago – 油赤子 – Reincarnation of a man who once stole oil.
  • Aka Manto – 赤マント – Disemboidied voice in bathrooms which will kill all it talks to.
  • Akaname – 垢嘗 – A creature known for licking the filth out of bathtubs.
  • Akashita – 赤舌 – Creature which may denote bad luck.
  • Amefuri Kozō – 雨降小僧 – Houseboy of the Rain God.
  • Amikiri – 網剪 – Crustacean like creature which likes to cut netting.
  • Aobōzu – 青坊主 – One-eyed monk.
  • Aosagi no hi – 青鷺火 – Old herons.
  • Aonyōbō – 青女房 – A young and inexperienced lady in waiting.

C

  • Chōchin bi – 提灯火 – Fires carried by the ‘Lord of Night.’

F

  • Funa yūrei船幽霊 or 舟幽霊 – Aimless spirits or ghost lost at sea.
  • Furaribi – ふらり火 – Monster resembling a wandering flame.
  • Furutsubaki no rei – 古山茶の霊 – Old spirits of camelia trees.

G

  • Gagoze – 元興寺 – Creature which gained its name from Gangō-ji temple where it lived and killed monks. (Also known as Gangōji).
  • Ganbari nyūdō – 加牟波理入道 – Creature that lives in your bathroom.

H

  • Haka no hi – 墓の火 – Lights seen around gorin in graveyards.
  • Hannya – 般若 – The detached soul of a woman from The Tale of Genji.
  • Hashi-Hime橋姫 – A woman transformed into a ‘living Oni’ who has a desperate longing to be loved.
  • Hiderigami – 魃 – Body of a beast, but face of a man. It has one arm and one leg. Causes droughts. (Also known as Kanbo).
  • Hikeshi baba – 火消婆 – When Ying has to overtake Yang, this old woman type creature appears.
  • Hitodama人魂 – Souls of the dead.
  • Hitotsume Kozō – 一つ目小僧 – Small boy type creature who likes to jump out and scare people. Has an unusually long tongue.
  • Hiyoribō – 日和坊 – Creatures living in the Changzhou mountains of China.
  • Hone onna – 骨女 – Woman returned as a skeleton to seduce a man.
  • Hyōsube – ひょうすべ – Enchanted dolls which built the Kasuga Grand Shrine.

I

  • Ikiryō – 生霊 – Persons soul which can detach from then whilst sleeping.
  • Inugami – 犬神 – A Spirit capable of protecting, possessing and cursing humans.

    Inugami in the Hyakki Zukan.

J

  • Jorōgumo – 絡新婦 – Creature resembling a Spider.

K

  • Kamitachi – 窮奇 – A sudden whirlwind which bites at your skin.
  • Kamikiri – 髪切り – Creature which likes to cut hair.
  • Kappa – 河童 – Water dwelling frog-men which will steal the ‘life force’ of people.
  • Kasha – 火車 – Creature appearing at funerals, capable of stealing the dead and tearing apart their body.
  • Katawa guruma – 片輪車 – Female spirit attached to a wheel which wanders about.
  • Kawa Akago – 川赤子 – Creatures resembling babies which live high up in mountain streams.
  • Kawauso – 獺 – River otter which is a shape-shifter and trickster.
  • Kejōrō – 毛倡妓 – Woman with long hair from the pleasure quarters of Edo.
  • Kitsunebi – 狐火 – Fire breathing foxes which people would watch to determine the years harvest.
  • Kodama – 木魅 – Tree dwelling Spirits.
  • Kosenjō no hi古戦場火 – The blood of dead warriors causes these spirit fires.
  • Kurozuka – 黒塚 – Old hag which feast on unborn children. (Also known as Onibaba).

M

  • Makurageishi – 反枕 – Act of flipping a pillow and having a vision.
  • Mikoshi – 見越 – Mountain Spirits which scares passersby. Has an exaggerated long neck. (Also known as Mikoshi-Nyūdo).

N

Nurarihyon in the Hyakki Zukan.
  • Nekomata – 猫股 – Cat which walks on two legs with a split-tail.
  • Noderabō – 野寺坊 – A kind of monk-type creature associated with Nodera Temple.
  • Nopperabō – のっぺらぼう – Creature with a featureless face, which scares people. (Also known as Zunberabo or Nupperiho)
  • Nuppeppō – ぬっぺっぽう – A featureless blob known to be delicious.
  • Nurarihyon – ぬらりひょん – The leader of the Yōkai.
  • Nureonna – 濡れ女 – Serpentine water creature who would appear and ask people to hold her child.
  • Nuribotoke – 塗仏 – An animated corpse.
  • Nyūnai Suzume入内雀 – The soul of Fujiwara no Sanekata who turned into a flock of sparrows.

O

  • Obariyon – オバリヨン – Creature who will demand a piggy back and increase its weight until they pin you to the ground. (Also known as Onbu-obake).
  • Okikuお菊 – Ghost who is trapped forever trying to find a lost plate in a set of ten. (Also known as Sarakazoe).
  • Ōmagatoki – 逢魔時 – The Twilight Hour, also called The Hour of Meeting Demons.
  • Oni – 鬼 – Giant mountain dwelling creatures with horns. They wear lion cloths.
  • Onmoraki – 陰摩羅鬼- A kind of bird, made from a transformed corpse.
  • Osakabe長壁 – Creature dwelling in Himeji Castle.
  • Otoroshi – おとろし – Creature which dwells in abandoned and unkempt areas.
  • Ouni – 苧うに – Mountain dwelling, hag like creature. (Also known as Wau or Wau-Wau).

R

  • Rokurokubi -飛頭蛮 – Creature with a very long neck allowing their head to wander far from their body.

S

  • Sakabashira – 逆柱 – Creature which escape from wooden pillars placed upside down.
  • Samebito – A ‘Shark Man’ whose tears turn to rubies. Mentioned in the tale The Gratitude of the Samebito.
  • Sansei – 山精 – Humanoid creature. It has one leg and its foot faces backwards.
  • Satori – 覚 – Mountain dwelling ape-like creatures, with the ability to talk to humans and read our minds.

    Seta by Utagawa Kuniyoshi.
  • Seta – Giant centipede from the Folktale My Lord Bag of Rice.
  • Shirachigo – 白児 – Scribe of the Inugami.
  • Shiranui 不知火 – Strange lights on the shoreline.
  • Shōkera – しょうけら – Creature which stops worms leaving a persons body according to the Kōshin Religion.
  • Shuten-dōji – 酒呑童子 – Ruler of an army of Oni on Mount Ōe.
  • Sōgenbi – 叢原火 – Wandering flame born from the evil monk Sōgen.
  • Suiko – 水虎 – A type of Kappa, which lives in China.

T

  • Takaonna – 高女 – A courtesan as tall as a second story.
  • Tamamo-no-mae – 玉藻前 – Fox spirit which drained the life of the Emperor.
  • Tanuki – 狸 – A trickster raccoon-dog.
  • Tenasobi – Trickster and shape-shifter which can create columns of fire. (Also known as Marten).
  • Tengu – 天狗 – Creature falling into type two, a raven kind or humanoid version. Seen as guardians of mountains.
  • Tenome – 手の目 – Creature whose eyes are in its hands.
  • Teratsutsuki寺つつき – The soul of Mononobe no Moriya which became a flock of weedpeckers.
  • Tesso – 鉄鼠 – Plague of rats born from the restless spirit of the monk Raigō.
  • Tōfu Kozō – 豆腐小僧 – Small boy in a straw rain hat who will offer you tofu to eat with varying consequences.
  • Tsurubebi – 釣瓶火 – Fire spirit which would drop onto the heads of those who walk under old trees.

U

  • Ubagabi – 姥火 – Wandering flame which appeared near Hiraoka Shrine.

    The Umibozu depicted by Utagawa Kuniyoshi.
  • Ubume – 産女 – Bird capable of forming into guise of a woman.
  • Umibozū – 海坊主 – Ocean dwelling creatures, which will try to sink boats. (Also known as Umimyūdō, Umikozō and Tate-Eboshi).
  • Umizatō – 海座頭 – A blind lute player.
  • Ushinotoki-mairi丑時参 – Hour of the Ox when curses are their most powerful.
  • Ushi-oni – 牛鬼 – Depictions vary, with older variants showing the creature to have the head of an ox and body of a spider.
  • Uwan – うわん – Creature which haunts abandoned homes.

W

  • Waira – わいら – Creature with flabby skin and a single arm with a claw.
  • Wanyūdo輪入道 – Wheel with the face of the monk which rolls around in the sky and on land.

Y

  • Yamabiko – 幽谷響 – Creature which is the manifestation of a mountains echo.
  • Yamauba – 山姥 – Hag type woman who lives wherever the cloud line is on a mountain. (Also known as Yamamba)
  • Yamawarawa – 山童 – Mountain dwelling creature with one eye which likes crab meat. (Also known as Yamawaro).
  • Yanari – 家鳴 – Creatures which make creaking sounds in your house.
  • Yuki-onna – 雪女 – Female mountain spirit who freezes to death people who walk through the mountains.

Z

  • Zenki and Goki前鬼 & 後鬼 – Two Oni who were known to steal children from people in the Nara Mountains.

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Supernatural Creatures